Open Road’s Spotlight is already out on DVD/VOD, and it’s in its 17th weekend at the box office with $39.1 million. So, despite its Best Picture Oscar win, how much juice can possibly be left in this film at the domestic box office? While exhibitors typically have a policy against booking titles that are already out on home video, there’s always a want to get a Best Picture winner back into theaters. An Open Road insider confirmed earlier tonight that there’s a plan to take Spotlight back up to 1,000 engagements. It’s currently in play at 685 locations. Should that plan hold, industry estimates see Spotlight‘s total cume rising by another 4% to 12% for a final take between $40.7M-$43.8M.
It’s worth noting that Spotlight finds itself in similar scenario to last year’s Best Picture winner Birdman. By Oscar night a year ago, that Fox Searchlight release was also a played-out fall release that was already out on DVD with $37.8M in its 19th frame. Searchlight jumped its theater count from 407 venues during Oscarcast weekend to 1,207 the following week. Following its big win, Birdman‘s total cume jumped by 12% to $42.3M, ending its run during mid-April. The average B.O. boost for a Best Picture winner between the night of the ceremony and the end of its run has hovered around 20%.
Heading into the tonight, many though 20th Century Fox/New Regency’s The Revenant was going to take Best Picture, and if that had been the case, that title stood to make another $10M-$15M at the box office. Fox will expand by a few hundred theaters, and the thinking is that its best actor win for Leonardo DiCaprio will continue to send folks to the multiplex. However, a Best Picture win would have fueled the ultimate gain. While a number of contenders got lost in autumn’s bloodbath at the B.O., The Revenant, was the only Best Picture contender to play the 2016 side of the awards season, and reaped the benefits of doing so in a market that had already OD’d on Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Since noms were announced on January 14, The Revenant actually saw the biggest boost out of all the best pic noms –+215%– jumping from $54.1M to $170.5M through this weekend.
This weekend, a number of distribs upped their theater counts for contenders to accommodate moviegoers looking to be in the know before tonight’s ceremony. Those seeing upticks over last weekend include A24’s Room (+59%), Open Road’s Spotlight (+51%) and Paramount’s The Big Short (+12%), while Fox’s The Revenant saw a -2% dip and its Searchlight’s Brooklyn a -4%.
On the day of nominations, we predicted a number of percent jumps and cumes. Open Road’s Spotlight was right on the money with our projections at $39.1M, +36% over the last six and half weeks. Distribution execs always believed that the biggest jumper percentage-wise would be A24’s Room, and in fact it was the second best with a 160% jump in its total B.O, moving from $5.2M on Oscar nom day to $13.5M through Sunday. The Revenant outperformed our industry $135M prediction by 26%. Fox Searchlight raised Brooklyn to 962 theaters soon after its nomination. It’s currently at 477 theaters and has collected $36.5M, a 60% hike since January 14.
Paramount’s The Big Short, which currently counts $68.5M, is just $500K shy from where the industry forecasted it would be by tonight. It’s +54% since collecting five Oscar noms. The Martian, Mad Max: Fury Road and Bridge of Spies are available on VOD/DVD.
Since 2005, some of the biggest post Best Picture hikes include Clint Eastwood’s Million Dollar Baby (+52% with final cume of $100.4M), Fox Searchlight/WB’s Slumdog Millionaire (+44%, $141.3M) in 2009 and the Weinstein Company’s The Artist (+41%, $44.67M) in 2012.